Many injured after Hong Kong escalator suddenly reverses and speeds up

By on March 26, 2017


An escalator ascending through four floors in a busy Hong Kong mall suddenly reversed direction and sped up, sending riders tumbling out the bottom. (Photo by Baycrest (Own work) [CC BY-SA 2.5 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.5)])
An escalator ascending through four floors in a busy Hong Kong mall suddenly reversed direction and sped up, sending riders tumbling out the bottom. (Photo by Baycrest (Own work) [CC BY-SA 2.5 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.5)])
MOSCOW—An escalator ascending through four floors in a busy Hong Kong mall suddenly reversed direction and sped up, sending riders tumbling out the bottom.

Some 18 people were injured, one seriously, after an ascending elevator at the Langham Place mall in the Mong Kok area of Kowloon, Hong Kong, suddenly reversed direction and began to increase its speed, hurtling toward the floor, before coming to a halt several seconds later.

Riders on the 150-foot four-floor escalator, one of the longest in the city, were thrown down in the mishap, and several were hospitalized, one with serious head wounds.

A spokeswoman with Langham Place stated that the facility was fully cooperating with authorities, and added that the escalator had been successfully inspected on March 23. The manufacturer, Otis Elevator, has been called in to investigate, according to the South China Morning Post.

The Langham Place mall, part of a large Hong Kong urban-renewal skyscraper complex completed in 2004, hosts some 200 shops and sees about 200,000 visitors every day.